Mahikari Exposed

Tom's Story

August 2001

For as long as I can remember I've been in a family where Mahikari has been a part of everyday life. I was a Mahikari Baby. Mum used to take us to the Centre all the time, and I grew up thinking that it was normal to receive Light, go to Ceremonies, have an Ancestors Altar, and hear Mahikari Teachings.

Whenever we went to the Centre, Mum gave and received Light while my brother and I played in the Children's Room. People were always asking us to come and receive Light, which took a fair amount of time, and we had to sit still which was quite difficult for us. Mostly I didn't want to, and I never felt any better or different after receiving Light.

When I was about nine I started to be hassled by the members and staff at the Centre. They kept on asking me if I was going to attend the Primary Course when I was ten. I would say that I might do it when I was a bit older, but I wasn't sure. This wasn't enough for them, and they kept on asking every time I went to the Centre. It was very annoying. People just presumed that I was going to do the Primary Course because my mum was a member.

After the new Dojo was built, I was questioned more frequently, and now about my age as well. I was already ten and a half, and I still didn't want to do the Primary Course. The first Primary Course at the new building was approaching rapidly. I felt like the staff were forcing me into attending the Primary Course. I knew it would please Mum as well, so I finally gave in. Everyone at the Centre congratulated me for a while. Then I had to do a lot of work to get ready. I had to learn how to take care of the Divine Pendant by having a practice one. I had to wear a singlet to hold the Pendant in a pocket, and I didn't like this much. The Omitama was very hard to look after properly. I also had to memorise the Amatsu Norigoto prayer, which was long and complicated.

The Primary Course finally came. It was extremely tiring and very boring. I didn't take any notes, and not very much of the teachings made sense to me. The days were far too long, much longer than school hours, and we didn't get enough breaks. I didn't feel like going most of the time. I think some of the other kids there felt the same.

After I joined, instead of being hassled about when I was going to do the Primary Course, I was hassled about giving and receiving Light, so it wasn't much different. Even if I said I didn't want to, they still kept asking me, 'Are you sure?', as if they didn't believe me. I didn't want to have to give Light all the time, in fact I didn't want to do it at all. I stopped wearing my Omitama after a few months, and I haven't missed it at all. I'm really glad we all left Mahikari. I think that kids shouldn't be allowed to do the Primary Course until they're older and they should not be hassled into joining.

"Tom", aged 12


Last Modified: Sept 2015